Rick Reeno of BoxingScene.com reports that Joel Casamayor believes a July 31 fight with Amir Khan is set, and his manager Luis DeCubas says the money is the only thing to be finalized.
Casamayor is still the same old ornery guy he's always been, ready to talk up a storm:
"Come July 31 lightning is going to strike twice because I'm going to knock Amir Khan out dead. ... [C]ome July 31st I'm going to prove that he's a nobody."
Casamayor, 38, was set to fight Joan Guzman in Las Vegas on the Marquez-Diaz II PPV on that date. Now, that show will be a split main event with Marquez-Diaz II in Vegas and Khan-Casamayor in the UK, assuming that this really does get done. The veteran has been inconsistent in his last four fights, which date all the way back to November 2007. He was given an extreme gift decision over Jose Armando Santa Cruz, then stopped Michael Katsidis and was highly competitive against Juan Manuel Marquez before being stopped himself for the first time in his career. He returned last November heavy to fight club fighter Jason Davis, and looked iffy at best, but conditioning and indifference may well have played a role in that. No doubt he'll be up as much as he can be for a fight with Khan.
Khan (23-1, 17 KO) will have some real physical advantages. He's much faster than Casamayor is anymore, and will have three inches of height and a couple inches reach to his advantage. Khan has shown a good ability to use that reach, and since Casamayor (while no slugger) has a lot more pop than Paul Malignaggi, I'd expect Amir to treat Joel with a lot more respect when it comes to how open he leaves himself. Khan fought a bit recklessly with Paulie because Malignaggi has no power. Not that Khan was just winging haymakers, but he seemed slightly indifferent to defense at times, because he could do that and get away with it.
It's a fairly interesting fight. There is the chance that Casamayor is simply too old and too small to be beating anyone good at 140 pounds, but he's done a lot in his career and I can't begrudge him a final shot at glory and a good payday. He's earned it.